Last night of DNC may stay at the TWC Arena

UPDATE: DNC officials confirmed Wednesday morning that President Obama’s Thursday night acceptance speech will take place inside the Time Warner Cable Arena, the site of the first two nights of the Democratic National Convention.

In 2008, the Democratic National Convention reached its climax with Barack Obama giving his acceptance speech before a crowd estimated at 84,000 at what was then known as Invesco Field at Mile High and is now known as Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Regardless of the naming rights deal du jour, it’s the stadium where the NFL Denver Broncos play football. Every seat was filled and the air fairly crackled with excitement.

The intention was, and officially still is, to repeat that event at Bank of America Stadium here in Charlotte.

But according to an article  written in Charlotte by Toby Harnden of London’ newspaper The Daily Mail, a decision has either already been made or is under strong consideration to scrap the outdoor venue and conclude the convention here in Time Warner Cable Arena in which activities for Tuesday and Wednesday night are already scheduled. According to the article, the concern is that the stadium will have thousands of empty seats, which would constitute a potentially devastating visual for the Obama campaign.

This is not the official reason, of course. If the decision to move the finale of the Democratic National Convention back to the Time Warner Cable Arena, the official reason will be given as concern for the weather. It has rained pretty much every afternoon and evening since the weekend here in Charlotte and all of the weather websites put the chance of rain and/or thunderstorms Thursday at 30 percent. But until today, convention organizers had been saying that the stadium event would go on rain or shine.

Here’s the money quote from the article:

Democratic convention sources have indicated that the ‘contingency plan’ is at an advanced stage and that a move to the stadium appears certain.

‘It looks like a done deal to me,’ said one convention worker. ‘The decision’s apparently been taken and it’s just a matter of spinning it as being forced on us by the weather.’


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